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picture gives meaning to the view of St. John Chrysostom when he sees the entire people gathered in prayers constituting the "fullness of priesthood" (Hom. 3.4 in Phil.).

Laity have not only a prominent place in the Church but also a function.  Based on Jewish custom, laymen were permitted to preach in church up to the time of Origen (230).  The bishops of Jerusalem and Caesarea invited the lay teacher Origen to expound the scriptures to their congregations.  Also, lay teachers were still approved by the Apostolic Constitution, "Although a man be a layman, if experienced in the delivery of instruction, and reverent in habit, he may teach; for scripture says:  'They shall be all taught of God'"(8.31).  Laymen were prohibited from teaching in the presence of clergymen and without their consent in the Fourth Gene­ral Council at Carthage (398).  But this schism that we find in the west between laity and clergy, was not found in the east.  Parents were rather encouraged and obliged to instruct their chil­dren at home, since the secular schools were largely pagan (John Chrys­os­tom, Inan. gl. 19).

Laity in the Church of Antioch had a place not only in the church only but also in the world.  That is where they were called to practice Christianity.  The bishop of the place, Ignatius, was so fond of his title of "Christian" or "disciple"

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